CANADA'S LABOUR UNIONS COULD PLAY A PROMINENT ROLE IN EFFORTS TO SIDESTEP 'BUY AMERICAN'

Nov 21, 2020

By Jeremy Logan

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Canada’s biggest private-sector unions are likely to play a starring role when Joe Biden’s proposed Buy American rules take centre stage next year.

The president-elect, a self-described “union guy” and “blue-collar Joe,” makes no secret of his affinity for organized labour.

That’s good news for Canada, where prominent unions like the United Steelworkers and the United Food and Commercial Workers have members on both sides of the border.

Biden says no government contracts will be awarded to companies that don’t manufacture their products in the United States, reprising similar rules the Democrats imposed in 2009.

Gary Doer, who was ambassador to the U.S. at the time, says unions were key to Canada’s successful effort to secure waivers to those rules in 2010.

Jerry Dias, president of Unifor, the country’s largest private-sector union, says he’s confident Biden’s presidency will herald a new era in Canada-U.S. relations.

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